CONCORD, N.C. – Watkins Glen (New York) International is a unique track. Known for its distinctive backwards pit stops and serpentine shape, the 2.45-mile track is complete with all the twists, turns and excitement typical of a NASCAR road course. Over the years, Watkins Glen has played host to several memorable Hendrick Motorsports moments since NASCAR's permier league began racing there again in 1986.
Before the green flag drops at Watkins Glen on Sunday, let’s take a look back at three memorable Hendrick Motorsports moments at the New York track.
Aug. 10, 1986: Tim Richmond was representing a young Hendrick Motorsports team in 1986 when he strapped into his Chevrolet at Watkins Glen International for NASCAR’s first Cup race at the road course since 1965. The organization had formed two years prior and was on the hunt for its ninth team win – and first road-course victory. After winning the pole position, Richmond lined up his No. 25 Chevrolet for 90 laps of road-course-style racing. He led 29 laps before seizing the win, crossing the finish line first ahead of NASCAR Hall of Famers Darrell Waltrip, Dale Earnhardt and Bill Elliott. His victory was one for the history books, as it marked the return of annual Cup races at Watkins Glen International.
Aug. 12, 1990: Hendrick Motorsports was searching for its first win of the season when the team arrived at Watkins Glen in 1990. Ricky Rudd ended the search when he crossed the finish line 6.54 seconds before his competitors, giving Hendrick Motorsports its 28th Cup win.
Aug. 15, 1999: Jeff Gordon was the reigning Watkins Glen king when he climbed into his No. 24 Chevrolet for the 1999 Cup race. Having won at the serpentine track two years in a row, Gordon was looking to protect his title – and he didn’t disappoint No. 24 fans. Gordon led for more than half of the race before taking the checkered flag at the New York track. Today, he remains the all-time lap leader at Watkins Glen and currently ranks second in all-time wins.
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